ISO 9001 | Quality Management Systems | QMS | NQA

ISO 9001 is the International Standard for Quality Management Systems.

Helps you with

Customer Satisfaction, Process Improvement, Product Improvement, Pre-Qualification and Requests for Quotation, Operational Efficiency, Internal Auditing, Risk Management, Training and Competence and Brand and Reputation.


ISO 9001:2015 is the internationally recognized standard for Quality Management Systems (QMS). It is the most widely used QMS standard in the world, with over 1.1 million certificates issued to organizations in 178 countries.

ISO 9001 provides a framework and set of principles that ensure a common-sense approach to the management of your organization to consistently satisfy customers and other stakeholders. In simple terms, it provides the basis for effective processes and effective people to deliver an effective product or service time after time.

ISO 9001:2015 replaces ISO 9001:2008, the revised standard was published on September 23, 2015 and had a 3 year transition period.

The standard follows the common structure provided by Annex SL. To find out more about Annex SL click here. ISO 9001:2015 is more compatible with other management systems, such as ISO 14001, making it more effective and efficient to integrate management systems.


Any organization can benefit from implementing ISO 9001:2015 as its requirements are underpinned by eight universal management principles:

  1. a customer focused organization
  2. leadership
  3. the involvement of people
  4. ensuring a process approach
  5. a systematic approach to management
  6. a factual approach to decision making
  7. mutually beneficial supplier relations
  8. continuous improvement

The most recent update to the ISO 9001 standard offers a number of important benefits:

  • The Annex SL structure provides a common language between ISO management systems that streamlines the path to compliance related certifications.

  • The focus on risk identifies areas of concern in advance and allows you to allocate resources where they are most needed.

  • The leadership requirement engages upper-level management and brings quality assurance more in line with overall business objectives.

  • The performance evaluation and self-governance components can foster innovation and deliver enhanced value for stakeholders.

  • The emphasis on organizational context looks at quality management from a big-picture perspective.


All organizations must transition to the 2015 version by the September 2018. The 2015 version represents the most up to date thinking and best practice in quality management and is recommended by NQA.

My organization might choose ISO 9001:2015 because:

  • We want to implement the current best practice and future proof our business systems.
  • Having ISO 9001:2015 will demonstrate to my customers and stakeholders that I am up to date.
  • We are integrating our quality management system with my environmental management system and would like to use Annex SL to make this process easier. 


  • Customer satisfaction. Deliver products that consistently meet customer requirements.

  • Reduced operating costs. Continual improvement of processes and resulting operational efficiencies mean money saved.

  • Improved stakeholder relationships. Improve the perception of your organization with staff, customers and suppliers.

  • Legal compliance. Understand how statutory and regulatory requirements impact your organization and its customers.

  • Improved risk management. Greater consistency and traceability of products and services means problems are easier to avoid and rectify.

  • Proven business credentials. Independent verification against a globally recognised industry standard speaks volumes.

  • Ability to win more business. Procurement specifications often require certification as a condition to supply, so certification opens doors.


Application for registration is made by completing either a Quick Quote online or the ISO 9001 Quote Request Form. This provides information about your organization so we can accurately define the scope of assessment.

Assessment to ISO 9001 is undertaken by NQA - this consists of two mandatory visits that form the Initial Certification Audit (explained below). Please note that you must be able to demonstrate that your management system has been fully operational for a minimum of three months and has been subject to a management review and full cycle of internal audits.

Certification to ISO 9001 is issued by NQA and maintained through a programme of annual surveillance audits and a three yearly recertification audit.

For further information on the audit stages click here.


ISO 9001 Training - We provide a range of IRCA and CPD accredited training options to suit your needs and budget. These give you the skills to implement, audit and manage an effective quality management system.

Gap Analysis - We can undertake a gap analysis to help you determine the likely workload and timescale for implementing a quality management system that will achieve ISO 9001 certification. You can use this to plan implementation or brief a consultant. Firstly be sure to download our ISO 9001:2015 Gap Analysis to get you started.

Consultancy - We don't provide consultancy but we can help you choose a reputable consultant from the NQA Associate Consultant Register.

Get a Quote - We'll give you a clear indication of the costs of gaining and maintaining certification. You can complete a Quick Quote online or complete a formal Quote Request Form and email it directly to our sales team. 


We can advise you on how to achieve certification, related training, useful resources and finding a reputable consultant.

Contact our business advisors on 0800 052 2424 or submit the form below:

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